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#9 NC State Wrestling Opens Dual Season Tonight Against #26 Old Dominion

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The #9 NC State Wrestling team will open their Dual Season tonight, hosting #26 Old Dominion in Reynolds Coliseum at 7pm.

The Wolfpack have won the past 5 duals with the Monarchs over the past 5 seasons, and hold a 15-5-1 lead in the overall series.

Below is a look at NC State’s wrestlers that are ranked heading into the season opener.

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Duals have been NC State’s bread and butter the past 5 years, leading the nation in Dual victories, and ranking 3rd in Dual Winning Percentage (89.3%).

Here’s a look at the Top-20 matchups to look out for tonight:

125 pounds – #13 Redshirt Freshman Jakob Camacho – vs. #7 Junior Michael McGee – McGee has qualified for the NCAA’s in his first 2 seasons, making the Round of 12 last year. MAC Champion.

141 pounds – #11 Redshirt Junior Tariq Wilson vs. #14 Redshirt Senior Sa’Derian Perry – Wilson wrestled his first two seasons at 133, earning All-American honors his first year, and barely missed the honor last year. His first ever match at 141 will be against Perry, who has qualified for the NCAA’s two years in a row, and earned All-American honors last year.

157 pounds – #1 Redshirt Junior Hayden Hidlay vs. #4 Redshirt Senior Larry Early – This is the marquee matchup of the evening. Hidlay is the first Wolfpack wrestler to enter the season ranked #1 since Nick Gwiazdowski in 2016. This marks the 3rd time these two have faced off, with Hidlay taking the first match as a Freshman, and Early squeaking out a 4-2 victory last year. Hidlay has earned All-American honors his first two years, finishing 2nd and 4th respectively. Early finished 8th in the NCAA’s last year.

 

It’s worth noting that #7 Redshirt Junior Nick Reenan (197) will not be wrestling tonight, as he is still recovering from ACL surgery.

In a remarkable feat, NC State has been ranked in the Top-10 now for 60 consecutive weeks.

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NC State’s Pat Popolizio Earns 2020 ACC Coach of the Year Honors

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NC State Wrestling Head Coach Pat Popolizio has been named the 2020 ACC Coach of the Year.

Under the leadership of Popolizio, NC State was undefeated in duals (15-0) for the first time in school history. He led the Wolfpack to an ACC Championship for the 3rd time in his time in Raleigh. The ACC title was NC State’s 17th in school history, tying UNC for the most in conference history.

This is Popolizio’s 2nd time winning the award. In sum, 3 NC State coaches have earned the honor, a total of 9 times now.

NC State finished the season ranked 3rd heading into the NCAA Tournament.

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NC State’s Trent Hidlay Wins ACC Freshman of the Year

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NC State Redshirt Freshman Trent Hidlay (184 pounds) has been named the 2020 ACC Freshman of the Year, becoming the 4th Wolfpack Wrestler to earn the honor.

Hidlay finished with a 23-4 record, and finished 2nd in the ACC Championships, earning All-ACC honors. Had the NCAA Tournament taken place, he was slated to be a #5 seed.

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NC State’s Hayden Hidlay Wins ACC Wrestler of the Year

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NC State Redshirt Junior Hayden Hidlay (157 pounds) has been named the 2020 ACC Wrestler of the Year, becoming the 10th Wolfpack wrestler to earn the honor.

Hidlay finished the year with a 28-1 record, and won his 3rd straight ACC Championship. Not only did he win the ACC title, but he remained undefeated against ACC opponents throughout his 3 year collegiate career.

Due to Covid-19, the NCAA Tournament was cancelled, but Hidlay was set to be a #2 seed.

NC State has won 5 of the last 7 ACC Wrestler of the Year honors.

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NC State’s Hayden Hidlay Wins ACC Wrestler of the Week for 2nd Time this Year

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NC State Redshirt Junior Hayden Hidlay earned ACC Wrestler of the Week honors for the 2nd time this season for his dominating 16-3 major decision over Matt Zovistoski of Appalachian State on Friday night.

Zovistoski was a ranked opponent, with FloWrestling ranking him 17th, and InterMat ranking him 20th.

This was Hidlay’s 3rd ranked victory of the season, and his second victory over Zovistoski. The last time they faced each other, Hidlay squeaked out a 3-2 victory.

This marks the 7th time Hidlay has earned ACC Wrestler of the Week honors.

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